Frederick Bryant

Miami-Dade County


Retired, worked as a teacher for 20 years

Florida A&M University (B.A., Political Science)

More than 20 years working in the public school system

Member of the alumni associations of Miami Northwestern High School, Florida A&M University

Why are you running?

I am African-American, and I just felt the need for an African-American to be in the race. There’s a lot of shootings going on, and I think youth need to see that they can be and do whatever they want.

The shootings need to stop. That’s not the only way to achieve things.

Why are you best qualified?

I do have a bachelor of science in political science from Florida A&M University, and also my socio-economic background. I am from Miami, I grew up in Miami, Liberty City, the Scott-Carver projects. I was not born with a silver spoon in my mouth. I think I would be the most equitable candidate for all the county.

What are the biggest challenges Miami is facing?

The shootings and killings going on. That’s the biggest challenge for me.

How do you propose solving it?

I think the first thing is there needs to be awareness of it, but they don’t seen to be addressing the issue. There needs to be more conversation between the mayor, police department, and the community. The mayor and the police dept, they can communicate any time. But there needs to be more between the mayor’s office and the community, between the police department and the community.

What makes Miami so damn cool?

Well, the weather. I am from Miami, I was born here, the weather is great. For me, I don’t want to go anywhere. I see a lot of people moving out, but this is home. The weather is great, for one thing.

What can Miami-Dade do to prepare for sea level rise and protect our natural environment?

I just retired last year, I was a teacher for 20 years, even in school we talked about how the coastline is decreasing. As far as what to do about it… I live right off the bay, in Overtown. Even before you ask that question, that has been front of my mind. One thing I would do is consult the county engineers and if need be, consult with national engineers on that issue. As you know there are already communications with the government about the Everglades Park. We can also talk about the sea level here in this area.

Why is the rent so high?

We kind of all know that. There’s a great population down here. The pop is one thing that makes the rent high. Another thing that makes it high is the city. There’s a lot to do here. If people come here and want to be here, the rent is going to be high.

What can be done? I actually ran for mayor of City of Miami in 1984 and you know I grew up in housing projects. One of the proposals I made is that people who live in public housing could get some kind of ownership or if they ever decide to move, maybe they could see some kind of funding toward their next move. People in government housing can be able to accumulate some funds or maybe even ownership. I think that’s one thing that can be done.

Is there anything that can be done to fix our transit system and get traffic under control?

Traffic is another issue. Driving I-95 at 5 o’clock in the afternoon, I’ve experienced transportation problems here. I have the experience of riding buses, get with the transportation dept here and just have open discussions on that.

How do you feel about the county’s campaign finance system?

I haven’t raised a lot of money from outside sources but I look at where a candidate might raise $3 million or something to that effect, for me I think the problem is when you might have someone working for the county or getting contracts with the county and then donating money to a campaign. If you have your cronies, my problem is when the mayor may have his cronies employed by him and then those same cronies kicking back plenty of money to his campaign — that’s my concern. When his cronies that are getting paid by he government, they have meetings together and then the mayor and his campaign get kickbacks. That’s a concern for me right there.

If you had a $100 budget to spend on the city, how would you spend it?